Saturday, February 22, 2014

I Don't Like to Lose

One of my colleagues is a racist--flat out. I get that already, but I thought a part of my mission as it relates to having been placed on this team of misfits, was to be the example of a worthy black man. One who you don't have to who is articulate and sharp. Though I embody the aforementioned, it has done little to change the racist's mind. Every time a situation comes up--in particular the Zimmerman and the Dunn trials, there has been nothing but strife between us as we try to talk out what I know and understand to be the inherent racism present in both cases.

My purpose is not so much to re-litigate the cases as it is to use the cases as a concrete example of what Black people in America can be subjected to. I was impressed with Mark Geragos who said very plainly on television that America is still a very racist place. Geragos remarked that he was not at all surprised by the stuff that Dunn was saying--animals, thugs, more people should kill them like so they'll get the hint, etc--because he says that he hears that type of stuff all the time when people think it's 'safe' to say it. I sent the guy a link to that video and another one so he could hear and see people who look like him affirm that America's racist ways are not yet gone. Contrary to the narrative that he believes. He's of the opinion that clearly racism is over exaggerated and inflated because we have a Black president. The thinking public is keenly aware that this view is unfounded.

We were discussing the issues via email and in person. He said something like, "I don't have to defend myself." What did he say that for? I laid his soul to rest. I'll shorten it...basically I told him that I have not asked him to defend his position simply because it is indefensible--full stop. I just wanted him to gain new data...because when we know better we do better.

A Black colleague of mine told me to let it go. The other coworker is never going to get it.

I am disappointed in that because he has a child who he will likely rear with this racist view. Funny thing is he doesn't think he's racist. I guess I don't have to tell you he a firm Tea Party supporter.

Here's a scenario he posed to me. Racist coworker and a friend were at Dave and Buster's playing a basketball game. A Black guy came up behind the friend and called next on the game. The friend bent down to tear off the tickets he had won. THe Black guy must've thought the guy was trying to play another game because he mentioned again that he had called next. The ticket tearer said that he was only retrieving his tickets. My racist coworker wanted to know what's the line between self defense and murder. He posed the question because he said the Black guy was close to them and they felt threatened. Racist coworker wanted to know if it would have been okay to kill the guy since they felt threatened. Enter my blank stare.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Here We Are Again...

Yet another time in the sordid tale of race relations African Americans--males in particular are devalued and dehumanized. Although I didn't follow the trial of Michael Dunn very closely I was displeased to hear the snippets of media coverage that I heard prior to the verdict. Dubbed the 'loud music trial', all I would hear is about how this random white guy parked near/beside some young black guys and asked (probably demanded--because some of us have unreasonable expectations colored by the white privilege we unknowingly or pretend to unknowingly enjoy) them to turn down the music.I don't need to go into all the other ways Dunn could have avoided any conflict, but clearly he was looking to start trouble, at least from my vantage point.

I wasn't there that fateful night, but I do know that it ended with Dunn exiting his vehicle, taking a knee like he's a vigilante from the wild wild west and firing 10 shots into the nice Dodge Durango they were inside. How tragic that a white man's inflated sense of self, superiority, privilege and disdain for difference costed Jordan Davis his short life.

Even more tragic is my lack of surprise at this travesty of justice. To be fair, Dunn was found guilty on like 4 of the charges, but the jury was hung on the main charge of first degree murder. That means that at least one juror had to believe that Dunn was justified in using deadly force against a group of teenagers who didn't tap dance on command. Enough of these weak punks who resort to wielding guns when they cannot have their way. America, God is not pleased.

We cannot continue to ignore the inequities that face people who are minorities. Would Dunn have reached for a gun had it been a group of four white boys? We'll never know...but my claim is no..he absolutely would not have reacted the same way. What is it about the mystique of the black man that scares so many. Is it because others feel that they are powerful beyond measure or at least potentially equal to them? If you believe that then it is in your best interest to feed the media machine with negative images and to keep the playing field uneven so that self actualization will only know a few and not the many.

Coming on the heels of the Trayvon Martin case I was already woefully poised to accept a verdict of not guilty or a mistrial on the charge of murder one. What's different here is that whether Dunn is found guilty or not for the first degree murder charge--and Angela Corey, Florida State District Attorney, has pledged to try the case again, he will serve upwards of 50 years for the charges that he was found guilty for, provided there's not a different decision rendered by an appellate court.

Well that's my two cents on the matter. I could go on and on, but we will respect the justice system, no matter how flawed it may be. NO surprise that a justice system that was never designed for minorities like myself still does not have a good handle on how to divy up equal justice.

One more rant...yeah this piece isn't flowing in an organized manner, but I want to get it all on paper. Why did we spend so much time focusing on the victim's perceived bad boy behavior--you know---listning to music on a Friday night with friends, and not enough time digging into the past of Dunn? I've seen clips and stuff online about perceptions of folks who knew him for for years. None of that was introduced at trial...I guess the prosecution had their reasons, but after losing the Trayvon Martin case, if I were them, I would have brought out all the stops. It almost feels like we just can't get it right to honor our fallen. I would appreciate it if they could've gotten a complete victory. The symbolism..especially during Black History Month would have been refreshing.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Thoughts...A Collection

1. I am so glad that during the State of the Union address that my President called climate change a fact. Like....why does the right not want to own the validity of science? I have a guy on my team at work who believes it's all a liberal hoax. It's 1:14 am so I don't have the energy to go into the craziness of his argument.
2. Sometimes we have to go through to get through. We don't always get there at the same time and we may not use the same methods. The point is that we all will get there. Sounds like you've finally arrived. I'll be there to meet you at the shore.
3. I have started operation get rid of this debt. I have been paying down all my credit cards so that I will have zero balances moving forward. I gotta get that score up so I can purchase in the near future.
4. I hate when you have to suffer for someone else's inadequacy. A lil situation happened on my job where I thought I would be able to leave sooner than it appears I will be able to leave. Well....all things in time. I believe everything happens for a reason. I really don't believe in coincidence; I believe in providence.
5. Even though she didn't hustle today,those Patron margaritas were on point.
6. Why are insurance companies allowed to play games when I need my car repaired. Someone hit me in the back on a snow day couple weeks ago. The dude has yet to call in (as far as I know) to his [father's] insurance company so that I can go have my vehicle repaired. Found out the process could take up to 45 days before they make a ruling. Smh....
7. Soon I want to sit down and set some goals for the year. Well I already have some things in mind, but I want to write the vision and make it plain.
8.I cannot find my passport. I need to order a new one.
9. I also need to pay the maintenance fee on the timeshare. If they send me one more "final notice...."
10.Am I the only person who doesn't have Facebook and Instagram? I do tweet though.
11. Blogger is on point....I typed in HTML in this post and it let me know really quick that I had a broken tag. Go 'head Google.
12. Speaking of head...
13. I'm ready for election season to start. Doesn't election season seem to be going the way of Christmas? You know how we have that Christmas September they start reminding up about the upcoming season....same with election season. Here it is 2 years out and I'm brimming with excitement.
14. Chris Christie would have done better in my book by just saying, hey I know ole dude, but I don't stand by his actions. (Like go ahead and still throw him under the bus but let him know that he has to be the sacrificial lamb in order for Christie's presidential bid). We used to kick it back in the day. Especially since the job at the Ports Authority that the guy had was created for him by Christie. Now...who creating jobs for someone they don't really know like that? Huh? I'll wait......
15. Another white guy shot another young black teenager? For some music? This has got to stop. And I think it happened in Florida no less.
16. Speaking of travesties...has everyone learned for Kendrick Johnson? The 17 year old non-mentally challenged almost adult who 'fell into a mat in a high school and died for positional asphysia? The nerve it takes to make up a story like that, drive across town and deliver that message with a straight face without fear of getting molly whopped. I don't know who signed off on that cockamamey crap but if I was in the room and heard that out loud I would have been like...ok...wait...y'all...we gotta come up with something better than that.
17. The second anniversary of my father's death passed this month. As a matter of fact today technically is the day we buried him and the day Nippy was found dead in her hotel at The Beverly. You know when I was in L.A. I had to go by and see the spot.
18. Guess I should take it on back to sleep. Just had a lot jump off today and I thought I should channel some of this energy by posting something on my neglected blog.
19. I wonder if any of the people I've followed on Twitter recently know that I am following them because I know them from the Blogosphere. They may not know why I comment sometimes on their posts. Oh well....

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Random Stuff

I was just over at Don's spot and in leaving him a comment I thought of something that I needed to let all three of my current readers know: I'm a visionary and I didn't know it. When I was a child I remember asking my sister and other folks who were older about why we don't fry turkey since it's poultry and we fry chicken. They all scoffed at me and said it wouldn't 'fry up right.' So I sorta accepted it as fact, but always maintained in the back of my mind that one day when I had some money and some time where no one was around...kinda hard to do in a 4 bedroom house with 7 people...that i would venture into the kitchen and explore this idea myself. Well, I never got around to it, but I remember encountering some in college. I was people do fry turkeys. Maybe my sister and those around me just weren't experienced enough with other stuff to give me guidance on this subject. They just a bunch of jive turkeys!

It's funny when things transition and the person who initiated the end begins to reach out and admits all of what went wrong /what they did and whatnot. I don't know what to do with that at this point.

I got to do something that I've never done before recently. Always thought about it, but finally did it. Wasn't all that. But least I can cross it off my list.

My dressing was banging that I made for Thanksgiving. My mama said hers didn't turn out as well. Maybe I need to give her my recipe.

The birthday is coming up soon and I've made no plans. Dang....gots to do betta. I think I'm going to the A for a friend's graduation. Maybe I'll spend some time down there. Is Compound still open? (Am I showing my age?)

I enjoy church...primarily just the sermon though. I need a church where they preach first and do all the other stuff after that. I don't need and hour of singing and whatnot. I'm down with singing a song or two that doesn't last for an hour and have a bridge and a vamp and then doesn't get reprised when it's supposed to be over already and then us going home as we place the offering in the baskets.

This season of Real Housewives of Atlanta is heating up. That doggone Phaedra is a trip. She's not Apollo's mama. Dang. Gon tell him he better not do it again. He prolly did get some head from Kenya though....but hey....he still with her so she should be satisfied.

Is this an old school view? As long as dude is taking care of home, if he has a few indiscretions, can't you forgive it and move forward. Like...the bills are paid and you're able to travel and pick up a new pair of shoes if you choose. Can't you work with his other issues. You know how many people would love to have a man who can at least hold down a job and help---not pay---but help with the bills?

Joey is doing fine. Did I mention I have a shih tzu maltease mix named Joey? I'm pretty sure I spelled that wrong, but I'm not inclined to Google or spell check it at this time.

I need to get my stuff together for work. It's almost time to start applying for promotions again.

Another RHOA question.....what the hell is wrong with Mama Joyce? Like gon get some money crazy. Stop hating.

YOu know how you start with a random list thinking you're gonna have all this good stuff to include? And then you start writing and realize there's not a much there as you thought and the stuff that you could really write more about you're still trying to keep close to the as not to be too vulnerable? Well yeah.....that's where I am.

I posted two days in a row and one went under November and the other day went under December. I'm spanning different months son!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

30 Day Recap

Wheh! A lot has transpired since the last post. I had to deal with some drama and some misunderstandings. Communication is so important. Saves people a whole lot of heartache and confusion. Now that I put on my big boy draws and opened the lines of communication things might turn around. It will take a while for things to "go back to normal" but there's definitely potential that things will be okay. It's day by day though.

I recognize I'm not saying a lot, but that's because I don't want to jinx anything. I believe that anything is possible, so I'm trusting and believe that this too shall pass. Those of you who know the words of prayer, pray my strength. (Sounding just like the end of a testimony in any COGIC church anywhere in the deep south.)

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Funeral Shenanigans

As you recall, Whitney Elizabeth "Nippy" Houston departed this life on February 11, 2012. That was also the date that we buried my father. The funny thing is everyone called me on that day to see if I was okay about Whitney and exactly zero people asked me if I was okay about my father's funeral. Well, it's because they already knew that it was well with my soul.

So the Tuesday prior to the Saturday of the funeral I get all these calls all night long. I didn't want to answer my phone so late and I already knew why I had 38 missed calls starting from around 3 am til like 6 am. I decided I'd call back on my own time after I got off work and after I went to a meeting that I needed to attend. I made up a story about leaving my phone somewhere and not having access to it so that I wouldn't have to answer a bunch of questions about why I didn't answer the phone or why I didn't call back.

Suffice it to say my suspicions were confirmed. My father had passed early Tuesday morning. My mom wanted me to rush home at once. I had to tell her to pump the brakes cause I had to tie up loose ends where I lived in Maryland before jumping on the road for a 9.5 hour drive home. I stayed from Wednesday through Monday of the next week...or maybe it was Tuesday. It was Valentine's Day--I remember that detail because I pushed for the funeral to be on Saturday so I could spend Valentine's Day with my current love interest. My father might've been dead, but I still wanted some Valentine's Day booty.

When I arrived I learned that the arrangements were pretty much solidified, but to my horror the funeral costs were exorbitant. My father did not have life insurance since the insurance he had was tied to his former job. And you know how it is, the sicker you get, the less likely people are to give you life insurance. Believe you me, I tried to get insurance on that joker many times, but I was denied each time. Yeah...even Colonial Penn is fake...all those lies about we take anybody. Well...actually they say they won't ask you any medical questions....however I suspect they just do some investigative journalism on their own to find out whether they should deny you because of the extremely high risk. So without insurance, of course [black folks we gotta do betta] we had to cover it ourself. The initial cost of the funeral was a little over $10K. I was ain't got no $10K to throw in the ground. Here's a small way I cut costs. The casket was $2400. I was ain't got nothing cheaper? They showed me a picture of one that was $ looked good enough to me. They were like we can go in the vault or somewhere so you can see it in person. I was like...I don't need to see it. It's $500 and I'm already sold. I also wanted to eliminate the limos and let us drive our own vehicles. That would've saved another grand, but my mom was adamant about having the limos. I was like...well...why can't we rent some from the people who do them for prom? We don't need $1000 limos. Anyway....managed to get the cost down to like $8300. We didn't have the entire amount so myself, my mother and my sister put together $5K as a good faith thing so they would go ahead and have the service and we agreed to pay the rest off in installments. Service went okay. I was pretty much comforting everyone else since they were distraught and I was like, "I wonder what food they have in the back." After the service we took an extended ride to the cemetery to bury the body. When that was over we went back for the repast...(i don't know why the food after a funeral gets a special name) where his side of the family came by and offered their fake condolences and admonishments about keeping in touch with each other and all that jazz. Of course I haven't spoken to virtually any of them since that day.

Mom kinda entered a mild funk/mini depression for about a couple months. Eventually she snapped out of it. They hid it from me though because I would've gone back home. If you read the other recent posts, I wasn't working for several months so I was definitely free to be at home for a month if needed be. She's better now and I hope that she'll continue to get better.

In terms of Jay Emm Bee making peace with everything, he did. The night before my father passed I remember vividly being in the movie theater. This urgency to pray came all over me. I prayed about the issues of the past and asked for total release from the bondage of anger and utter despising. God moved and took it away from me. This was roughly 1030-1100 that Monday night. About four hours later (Tuesday morning around 3 am) is when he passed. Look at God. I made me peace and I believe that is when my father was cleared to leave this earth. So it turns out, perhaps it was me who kept him alive for so long.

Monday, October 21, 2013


As I pen this I am awaiting a change in my current situation. I have prayed and made the sincerest appeal that I know how. Only time will tell if all the effort has been worth it. Seconds turn to minutes and minutes to hours, but I'm going to hold fast to what I know is possible. In case you happen to come across this, yeah....this one's for you.